Brentwood prepares to light up at a distance

Thursday December 3 will see Brentwood‘s first online virtual lighting up event which marks the start of Christmas and the launch of the Nutcracker Trail.

Lighting Up is hosted by Chris Boyland, Chair of Churches together and Bryan Deadman of Brentwood Baptist Church and will be available to see on the Brentwood Council Facebook page or the website: www.brentwood.gov.uk/events

The nutcrackers have been placed around Brentwood, Ingatestone and Shenfield and the trail can be downloaded from the website.

The 12 giant nutcrackers have all been individually sponsored by local businesses and families have six weeks to go out and about and locate each one to complete the trail and enter their forms into the special postboxes.

Entries will be drawn at random to be in with a chance to win a Nintendo Switch lite with game, Amazon fire tablet, and a £50 voucher.

Chairman of Community and Health, Councillor Cliff Poppy, said; “Lighting Up has always been the highlight of the year in Brentwood with thousands attending so, despite the COVID-19 restrictions, we wanted to make sure that everyone could take part from their homes.

“Virtual Lighting Up is a fantastic event with performances and all the trees being lit up online. We hope that residents will tune in and take part lighting up their own Christmas trees in their own homes.

“This marks the start of the festive season with our retailers able to open from December 3 and pubs that serve food able to welcome customers back too. I hope that people will support all our local businesses that have had such a tough time this year and enjoy this time with their families.

“The Nutcracker Trail is an ideal way to combine exercise with some fun and a meal or some Christmas shopping subject to the restrictions of staying within your bubbles. I hope that everyone enjoys the entertainment and has a wonderful Christmas.”

According to German folklore, nutcrackers were given as keepsakes to bring good luck to your family and protect your home. The legend says that a nutcracker represents power and strength and serves like a trusty watchdog guarding your family from evil spirits and danger.

More recently the nutcracker has come to be seen as the traditional Christmas messenger of good luck and goodwill.

Keep an eye out on www.brentwood.gov.uk/events for more information.

Mick Ferris

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